Cinema Scope


The titular nape of the neck invoked in the word is both a marked corporeal designation and an intimation of something bad about to happen. In , it represents the site of a beheading and the dreaded aura of imminent retribution. If translates as “to expect something,” then such anticipation is fraught with the ineluctable nature of violence as it relates specifically to Dominican life, which Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias carefully, if caustically, conjures with a near-palpable formal arsenal. The film opens to the bark of a sermon, presumably that of a Santo Domingo street preacher, summoning the tale of Diogenes in ancient Greece, who went looking for an honest man, just as the preacher now seeks someone who will love Jesus. The irony of the parable is that the potential disciple is being baited with the promise and to Diogenes) are established within before the camera effectively rolls, laying the groundwork for de Los Santos Arias’ sensually syncretic vision.

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